Transportation solutions needed for Snow King

Transportation solutions needed for Snow King

Transportation demand management (TDM) is commonly used to address the transportation impacts of developments, especially large projects like Snow King or Teton Village, with strategies like paying for bus passes for employees or guests. While Snow King’s plans allow for doubling their future guest capacity, their TDM requirements are outdated. As a resort district granted concentrated lodging and commercial development, and especially as a resort district located in town, they directly benefit from existing infrastructure and could easily and effectively implement TDM. Read our joint letter with Wyoming Pathways and the Responsible Growth Coalition below.


Jackson Town Council

December 16, 2019

Re: Transportation Demand Management for Snow King Resort Master Plan Amendment

Dear Mayor Muldoon and Town Council:

Thank you for the opportunity to comment on the proposed amendment to the Snow King Resort Master Plan. We are writing as a series of organizations, collaborating to improve transportation planning and advocacy in the valley, in line with Principle 7.1 of the Comprehensive Plan to “meet future transportation demand through the use of alternative modes.” We wholeheartedly believe that the proposed development at Snow King is a unique opportunity to further invest in our transit system, active transportation infrastructure, and transportation demand management (TDM) program to the benefit of the resort and town.

Snow King has a remaining 563,338 square feet of development remaining, as well as the ability to serve over another thousand overnight guests, essentially a doubling of their current capacity. Recent updates to the Integrated Transportation Plan and consulting by Jim Charlier have highlighted our town’s continued transportation challenges, particularly congestion; the Growth Management Program has cited greenhouse gas emissions as a dominant concern; and we have seen increased interest in widening or building more roads by the Wyoming Department of Transportation. Yet, Snow King Mountain Resort’s TDM strategies have remained essentially the same as they were when the original plan was written in 2000.

The current range of TDM strategies is insufficient to address anticipated traffic and infrastructure impacts, as many of them are redundant or not actual TDM strategies. While the applicant does commit to implementing three more TDM strategies, they added three redundant strategies to their list of requirements to fill. For example, they added, “Provide free or reduced level bus/bike passes to guests and inform guests of the availability of transit and non-motorized modes prior to arrival,” as well as, “Provide START bikes and promote alternative modes of travel for employees and guests.” Those options are not meaningfully different. Other strategies are simply not true TDM strategies, such as continuing to have groups as a large percentage of the lodging business. Furthermore, locating employee housing on site is already required, yet it is included as a TDM strategy. As it stands now, the resort could meet their TDM requirements with minimal, if any, changes to their current operations.

Rather than allowing Snow King Mountain Resort to choose from a menu of TDM strategies, please identify one key strategy – whether purchasing bus passes for employees and/or guests or partially funding START – that they are required to fill and then grant them the freedom to choose the rest. As a resort district, they are allowed concentrated lodging and commercial development at Snow King, and as a resort district located directly in Town, they benefit directly from existing infrastructure, where many TDM strategies could be easily and effectively implemented. We believe that a robust TDM program would better serve Snow King’s guests, neighboring residents, and our local roadways, and we request that more effective TDM requirements be written into the plan.

Sincerely,

Brooke Sausser – Community Planning Manager, Jackson Hole Conservation Alliance

Geoff Gottlieb – Executive Director, Responsible Growth Coalition

Tim Young – Executive Director, Wyoming Pathways

Phone: (307) 733-9417
info@jhalliance.org
685 S. Cache St. PO Box 2728
Jackson, Wyoming 83001